Eagles-Giants, Day After: Failing To Finish

Jordan Matthews. (USA Today Sports)

Jordan Matthews. (USA Today Sports)

With the game on the line and a little more than a minute remaining in the fourth quarter, Carson Wentz lofted the ball to Jordan Matthews in the end zone on fourth down. Matthews was running a fade route from the slot, a concept that has worked for the Eagles over and over again this season. It provided Wentz with his first NFL touchdown pass in Philadelphia’s opening drive against Cleveland, and it produced a 33-yard gain for the Eagles earlier in the game against the Giants.

But this time, the rookie quarterback placed the ball a little too far to the outside, and it barely touched Matthews’ middle three fingers before falling to the ground. For the fourth time this season, the Eagles had a chance late in the fourth quarter to win or tie the game with an offensive touchdown drive. And for the fourth time, Philadelphia failed to do so.

“We just didn’t finish, plain and simple,” Wentz said after the Eagles’ 28-23 loss. “It was tough. Just throughout the whole game, we struggled finishing in the red zone, and that’s something we’ve got to go back and we’ve got to be sharp on our details. I know that’s one thing we’ve all got to emphasize, but we’ve got to find a way to finish in the red zone.” Read more »

Eagles-Giants Preview Q&A With James Kratch

Zach Ertz. (USA Today Sports)

Zach Ertz. (USA Today Sports)

In this week’s installment of Opposition Research, we talked to Giants beat reporter James Kratch. We discussed why Zach Ertz will be so important on Sunday, if the Giants’ free agency splurge has paid off and who will win, among several other topics. Read more »

Why Zach Ertz Caught Just One Pass vs. Washington

Zach Ertz. (USA Today Sports)

Zach Ertz. (USA Today Sports)

Carson Wentz only threw the ball 21 times in the Eagles’ 27-20 loss to Washington, but when you have a tight end you agreed to pay a reported $42.5 million over five years just nine months prior, you’d expect him to produce more than Zach Ertz did on Sunday.

Ertz recorded just one catch (his worst mark since Week 13 of 2014) for 22 yards on three targets (his lowest total since Week 4 of 2015) as the Birds struggled to get one of the main focal points of their offense involved.

“There were plays where Carson, based on the progression and the read, could have thrown him the ball a couple of times,” Doug Pederson said. “You’ve got one football and we ask Carson to go through his reads. If (Ertz) is the guy, he’s the guy. But (Ertz) is a big part of the offense and we’ve got to continue and I’ve got to continue with [offensive coordinator] Frank [Reich] and the guys to still figure out and find ways to get him open and get him the ball.” Read more »

Zach Ertz Cleared For Eagles-Lions Game

Zach Ertz. (Jeff Fusco)

Zach Ertz. (Jeff Fusco)

The story of Wally Pipp serves as a cautionary tale professional athletes still think about more than 90 years after it happened, but for Zach Ertz, he no longer has to be concerned about potentially losing his job as Pipp did to Lou Gehrig after missing a baseball game one day in 1925.

Ertz missed the Eagles’ last two games due to a displaced rib he suffered in Week 1, but he was cleared today to play against the Lions in Detroit this week.

“Honestly, every day not being out there at practice, not being at the games killed me,” Ertz said. “Not being able to even travel to Chicago killed me. It was very tough. It’s very eye-opening. Everyone knows the story about Wally Pipp. I don’t think that was going to happen, but at the same time, everyone understands the possibility across the league.” Read more »

Eagles-Steelers Inactives: Two Starters Out

(Photo by: Jeff Fusco)

(Photo by: Jeff Fusco)

The following Eagles will be inactive for their game against the Steelers today: Josh AndrewsZach ErtzDillon GordonLeodis McKelvinIsaac SeumaloBryce Treggs and Halapoulivaati Vaitai. Read more »

Zach Ertz, Two Others Out For Eagles-Steelers

Zach Ertz. (Jeff Fusco)

Zach Ertz. (Jeff Fusco)

Zach Ertz (rib), Leodis McKelvin (hamstring) and Isaac Seumalo (pectoral) are out for the Eagles’ game against the Steelers on Sunday. However, Doug Pederson added that all three players are expected to be available for the Birds after the bye week following the Steelers game. Mychal Kendricks, (nose, quad) meanwhile, will be “good to go” this week. Read more »

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